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California Schools to Watch is a statewide program implemented by the California League
of Educators, California Department of Education, California Middle Grades Alliance, National Forum, and the California Schools to Watch model schools.
Live Oak Middle School

Redesignated: 2021, 2024

Designated 2018

Live Oak Unified School District

Sutter County

Parm Virk, Principal

2082 Pennington Road, Live Oak, CA 95953


School Characteristics

Community: Rural; Enrollment: 517; Grade Levels: 5-8; School Schedule: Fifth grade self-contained classes, 6th grade two-teacher cored teams, and 8th grade departmentalized with 50-minute periods. Common preps for English and math teachers. Eight minimum days scheduled for common planning throughout the year. Zero period is offered for math enrichment.

School Demographics

Free/reduced lunch: 84%; English learners: 21%

Replicable Practices

  • Live Oak has committed to five instructional principals, error correction, use of complete sentences, 50/50 student engagement time, clear objectives and push (to think and produce), guided by EDI design concepts.

  • Students are tested three times per year to provide data-based opportunities for intervention and re-teaching.

  • Supported by schoolwide AVID strategies, the school has committed to the implementation of literacy goals schoolwide.

  • The schedule allows for two periods of intervention/enrichment at the end of the day in grades 7/8 and one hour in grades 5/6. Students are either enrolled in focused ELA or math intervention classes or enrichment/elective courses such as robotics, CSI, music, art, or AVID. Students are also offered lunch-time tutorial, small group aide instruction as needed, or after-school tutoring.

  • Enhanced by Google classroom throughout the school, all classes are supported with Chromebook carts. Online resources are utilized in all classes.

  • Incorporating Costa’s levels of questioning with group collaboration and self-directed inquisition has afforded Live Oak students ample experiences with contemplation, critical thought, reflection and participation.

  • During lunchtime all students participate in 20/20 activity time to encourage students to explore various activities.

  • Live Oak’s highly successful “Bionic Clothing Closet” provides a clothing closet for students in need as well as job training opportunities for students who run it. Students earn “Tiger Tokens” for good behavior to be spent at the store.

  • Driven by the desire for continual improvement, Live Oak staff identify an instructional goal to implement each year which will become institutionalized on campus and implemented schoolwide i.e., Cornell notes, marking the text, summary writing, teaching Costa’s levels of thinking/questioning.

  • Many professional development opportunities have been provided to help staff work with the challenges faced by the parent community including: cultural relevance in the classroom, Capturing Kid’s Hearts, mindset and AVID training. In addition, parents participate in LCAP, site council, AVID nights, and a variety of other school programs many of which are held in the late afternoon or evening to attend to family’s working schedules.

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